On the 31 of January we tested the XR1 for the very first time. For this test we chose a karting track in Albaida (a small town in the East of Spain), because unlike most kartings, this one is not very slow and it has some fast sections. Several world championship riders come here to practice supermoto.
We were very lucky with the weather, we had a sunny day, without any wind and with a spring-like temperature. Ramón Bellosta, the owner of this bike, came to see the complete bike for the first time, and also looking forward to test the bike and check his feelings riding it.
Another rider came to push the bike close to its limits. Alex Martinez, a rider with a lot of experience both in Motocross and road racing, came to Albaida. Alex raced World Superstock in 2005 and 2006 (this year he was Kawasaki Italy official rider). Two years ago he also was the first one to test our moto2 bike.
We had more people in Albaida. The guys from “Agarra Aire” came to film a short video. Also photographer Kristina Fender came to shoot for Sideburn magazine, which are preparing an article about the XR1.
The first one to ride the bike was Ramón. We asked him to take 2 laps slow, just to check that everything was ok. After it, he went back to the track and after 2 laps more his kneesliders were touching the asphalt. Good signal!. He didn’t stop lapping, increasing his pace lap by lap. We had to stop him for lunch. He had a big smile in his face. These were his feelings:“While riding the bike, you easily notice the helpful riding position. The bike geometries, the rake and weight, let you forget about the engine 1.200cc size. You place it wherever you wish, in a quite easy way. The XR-1 is extremely compact, the frame structure and rigidity favor an instinctive turn in. You can face the apex aggressively, but knowing that you can going even further. The engine seems to be built for this bike. You constantly feel its torque, however easily guided by your right hand. This, also shows the great job done on the electronics. This test has exceeded my expectations and the objectives pursued.”
After Ramón, Alex rode the bike. He did it in a fast and agressive way from the very beginning. The tyres were screaming in every turn, and in some of them he was going into the corner quite sideways, in a supermoto style. At the chiqane exit his front wheel was always on the air. It was a funny show!
We are very satisfied about how this first test came out. We checked that the bike performs really well on this kind of track. We were lapping the whole day and we didn’t have any kind of problem.
Next test will be on a bigger and faster track, to check how the XR1 performs on really fast corners.